Вы находитесь на странице: 1из 14

International Journal of Engineering Technology, Management and Applied Sciences

www.ijetmas.com September 2015, Volume 3, Special Issue, ISSN 2349-4476

Formation, Quantification and Significance of Delta Ferrite


for 300 Series Stainless Steel Weldments
Rati Saluja1*, K. M. Moeed2
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Integral University, Lucknow, INDIA
2
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Integral University, Lucknow, INDIA

Abstract
The ability to calculate the delta-ferrite content expressed in terms of Ferrite Number (FN) has proven very
valuable in assessing the performance and predicting microstructure of austenitic stainless steel. 300 series of austenitic
stainless steel is primarily monophasic at room temperature. These grades of steels generally solidify during welding as
a mixture of austenite and ferrite. During cooling of austenitic stainless steel, the ferrite almost fully transforms to
austenite, but there could be retention of delta ferrite in the weld metal. However, the variation in chemical composition
of weld metal directly affects on precipitation of delta ferrite. It significantly influences both the mechanical properties
and welding characteristics of the steel. This paper presents the formation of delta ferrite, significant of ferrite content on
weld microstructure and mechanical properties. This paper presents a chronological review from the first predictive
diagram as Strauss Maurer diagram, Schaefflers diagram, and Delongs diagram, WRC's diagram up to the latest
mathematical model and measurement methods, for determining the content of delta ferrite in steel.
Keywords: Austenitic stainless steel, Constitution Diagrams, Delta ferrite, Ferritoscope, Neural Network.

1. Introduction
Achievements in steel refining technology and analysis techniques over the past decade have made it
possible to strictly control the chemical composition of Grade 300 austenitic stainless series. Minor changes in
the percentage of alloying elements and trace elements can noticeably affect performance, weldability,
machinability, corrosion resistance, and surface finish, several subgroup specifications have been developed
within the AISI specification [28]. The excellent corrosion resistance and high temperature strength of the
newest austenitic grade of 304 steel, places 300 series at the forefront of metallurgical technology [76]. While
solidification, the welded microstructure of austenitic stainless steel is either fully austenitic, or mixture of
austenite with little amount of ferrite along solidification grain and subgrain boundaries [43]. To control the
structure of 304 stainless steel weld deposits and amount of delta ferrite in weld is important because the
microstructure of the steel influences many of its properties [64]. Adverse effects of delta ferrite might include
increase in magnetic permeability of alloys containing ferrite, or reduction in impact strength during long-time
high-temperature service through an increase in the rate of sigma phase formation which leads to hot cracking
and embrittlement [24].
For designating the ferrite content of steel weld metal Ferrite Number (FN) is an arbitrary
standardized value. Several diagrams had been advanced to explain the formulation of ferrite number in weld.
The Ferrite Number approach was built up in order to minimize the huge variation in ferrite levels determined
on welds when measured using different techniques [23]. The ferrite level is important to assure minimum
exposure to solidification cracking when depositing austenitic stainless steel weld metal. To prevent weld
from corrosion resistance the lower ferrite number is essential, while balancing higher ferrite content to avoid
solidification cracking in the weld deposition [55]. Due to limitations in the recognizable methods, various
researchers had shown their scientific and technological interest towards the prediction and measurement of
ferrite number in austenitic stainless steel welds [70]. Study showed no significant differences in the content
of delta ferrite in relation to different methods of determining the delta ferrite [72].
The purpose of this review is to present a chronology of the different methods that researchers have
proposed for prediction of formation ferrite number with particular emphasis on formation and role of delta
ferrite on 300 series austenitic stainless steel weldments along with influence of phase transformations. It
includes predictive and measurement methods as well as merits and drawbacks of the presently used methods
are also considered.

23

Rati Saluja, K. M. Moeed

International Journal of Engineering Technology, Management and Applied Sciences

www.ijetmas.com September 2015, Volume 3, Special Issue, ISSN 2349-4476


2. Formation of ferrite
When welded, 304 steel exhibit a wide range of microstructures, solidification behaviors and resulting
ferrite morphologies [26,40]. As welded microstructures contain mainly the skeletal ferrite morphology, some
regions solidified as primary ferrite while other regions solidified as primary austenite, in which case the
ferrite is a product of the eutectic reaction occurring during the last stages of solidification [22]. The liquidus
projection starts at the peritectic reaction on the FeNi system
and moves down to the
eutectic reaction
on the CrNi system in the FeCrNi ternary system [17].
This eutectic ferrite is then in attendance along cell boundaries, unlike the skeletal and lathy ferrite
morphologies, in which the ferrite is contained primarily within the cell cores [13, 26]. The microstructure
of welds in this alloy can then be characterized by regions of both the eutectic ferrite and skeletal ferrite as of
Fig. 1[39]. The lathy ferrite and skeletal ferrite characteristic of welds characteristic of welds of theses alloy
are also revealed [9].

Figure 1 Pseudobinary section of the FeCrNi ternary diagram at 70% Fe, showing solidification modes
[39], Figure 2 Schematic of solidification behavior and ferrite morphologies [9]
In cooling from the molten state austenitic stainless weld metal of normal carbon content solidifies
first as a mixture of delta ferrite and austenite, most of the ferrite subsequently transforms to austenite as the
deposit cools through a temperature range just below the delta ferrite region[10,51]. The ferrite does not
instantaneously transform, but does so gradually over a short period of time. Theoretically the transformation
could be avoided almost completely if the deposit could be instantaneously quenched from the just frozen
state to black heat, which would result in a much higher percentage of ferrite [52]. Practically, the final
amount of delta ferrite in virtually all weld metal depends only to a rather minor degree upon the cooling rate
[10,45].
3. Significant of ferrite content
The Welding Research Council (WRC) Subcommittee on Welding Stainless Steel adopted FN as its
value for measuring ferrite in 1973 [16], and its method for calibration is specified by the AWS A4.2 and ISO
8249 standards [9]. FN approximates the "volume percent ferrite"[12]. Minimum ferrite content at levels
below 8 FN is necessary to avoid hot cracking in stainless steel welds. Hot cracking in 304 austenitic stainless
steel is amplified by low-melting eutectics containing impurities such as S, P, Si, N. It could be diminished by
small increase in Carbon, Nitrogen, Chromium, Nickel, and Silicon or by substantial increase in Manganese
content [55]. The amount of ferrite in the weld metal also controls the micro structural evolution during high
temperature service, corrosion and stress corrosion resistance. The low temperature toughness of the weld
metal is also related to the weld metal ferrite content [44].
1.
The hot cracking sensitivity gain increased as ferrite content is increasing and which has inverse
effect on, the ductility because of martensite formation and thus the potential for fracture increases [45].
2.
The ductility of ferrite at high temperatures is greater than that of austenite, allowing relaxation of
thermal stresses [63].

24

Rati Saluja, K. M. Moeed

International Journal of Engineering Technology, Management and Applied Sciences

www.ijetmas.com September 2015, Volume 3, Special Issue, ISSN 2349-4476


3.
The lower thermal expansion coefficient of ferrite as compared to austenite results in less contraction
stresses and fissuring tendency [42].
4.
As the ferrite is usually controlled to prevent microcracks as well as refines the grain size of the
solidified metal, which results in better mechanical properties and cracking resistance in stainless steel welds
[43,66].
5.
The higher solubility for impurity elements in ferrite leads to less interdendritic segregation [55].
6.
The presence of ferrite results in a larger interface area due to the solid state transformation to
austenite that begins soon after solidification. The increased area disperses the concentration of impurity
elements at the grain boundaries [43].
7.
The solidification temperature range of primary ferrite welds is less than that of primary austenite
solidified welds, providing a smaller critical temperature range for crack formation [63].
8.
Coarse grain formation in the HAZ occurring by recrystallisation and grain growth in fully austenitic
metals increases susceptibility to liquation cracking, while ferrite forming compositions are not susceptible
[40].
9.
The volume contraction associated with the ferrite-austenite transformation reduces tensile stresses
close to the crack tip, which decreases cracking tendency [8].
10.
Coarse grain formation in the HAZ occurring by recrystallisation and grain growth in fully austenitic
metals increases susceptibility to liquation cracking, while ferrite forming compositions are not susceptible
[40].
4. Chronology of Predictive and Measurement Methods
Presented below is a chronological review of the different diagram and techniques that researchers
have proposed including predictive and measurement methods.
4.1 Determination of ferrite number by constitution diagram
Regarding the prediction of stainless steel weld metal, the austenitic-ferritic alloy systems accumulate the
most interest of all. This preference for the austenitic-ferritic systems began in 1920, when Strauss and Maurer
introduced a nickel-chromium diagram that allowed the prediction of various phases in the microstructure of
wrought, slowly cooled steels [67]. The design of the above diagram was used as a model for many diagrams
to follow. These include the Schaeffler diagram, DeLong diagram, WRC-1988 diagram, and WRC-1992
diagram. Delong diagram are widely used for quantifying the ferrite number because this diagram is
particularly designed for stainless steel welds containing minimal percentage of ferrite [39].
4.1.1 The Strauss-Maurer diagram
The Strauss-Maurer diagram was modified by Scherer et al. in 1939 with the addition of austeniteferrite stability lines [60]. Strauss and Maurer introduced a nickel-chromium diagram that allowed the
prediction of various phases in the microstructure of wrought, slowly cooled steels [67]. This revised diagram
uses the Strauss-Maurer axes that represent the actual chromium and nickel content. The left side of the
diagram contains the lines proposed by Strauss and Maurer, while the right side of the diagram is the
contribution of Scherer et al [60, 67].
Newell and Fleischmann recognizing that other elements besides chromium and nickel had an effect
on the microstructure; hence, they developed an expression for austenite stability on the Strauss-Maurer
diagram [50]. The Newell-Fleischmann equation for the austenite/austenite and ferrite boundary is as follows:
(1.1)
In 1943, Field, Bloom, and Linnert then Binder, Brown, and Franks as well as Thomas, also in 1949 ,
proposed similar equations to establish the boundary between austenite stability and the formation of delta
ferrite, but grouping in the same arm of the expression all the alloying elements that promoted the same
microstructural phase equation 1.2 and equation 1.3 respectively[7].
(1.2)
(1.3)

25

Rati Saluja, K. M. Moeed

International Journal of Engineering Technology, Management and Applied Sciences

www.ijetmas.com September 2015, Volume 3, Special Issue, ISSN 2349-4476


With the appearance of the above coefficients, much of the research on the development and construction of
constitution diagrams was centered on determining the coefficients of these formulas, termed as chromium
equivalent and nickel equivalent equations.

Figure 3 Strauss-Maurer nickel-chromium microstructure diagram as modified by Scherer et al. [60]


4.1.2 Schaeffler diagram
In 1946, Campbell and Thomas proposed the concept of chromium equivalent for the first time during
the microstructual study of welded alloy 25Cr-20Ni while adding small amounts of molybdenum and niobium
[25]. The concept of equivalent included the contribution of those alloying elements responsible for the
specific phase formation, as depicted in Equation 1.4.
Creq = Cr + 1.5 Mo + 2Nb
(1.4)
Anton Schaeffler focused on the construction of a constitution diagram for weld metals that would
allow the prediction of weld metal microstructure based on the chemical composition [56]. Schaeffler diagram
contained Creq and Nieq formulas as Ferrite-promoting elements and austenite-promoting elements
respectively, for the axes, with ranges for the specific weld metal microstructural phases plotted in the
diagram [39]. The diagram was considerably accurate for most of the 300 series alloys of that time, using
conventional arc welding processes. Although nitrogen is known to be a strong austenite promoter, Schaeffler
did not include a nitrogen term in the nickel-equivalent equation, probably due to the difficulty in determining
the nitrogen content [7].
Nieq = Ni +0.5 Mn + 30C
Creq = Cr + 2.5Si +1.8 Mo + 2Nb
(1.5)
In Figure 4, one of the first Schaeffler constitution diagrams, with the Strauss-Maurer lines, is presented.
Along with the first diagram, Schaeffler reported a new equation for the phase boundary between fully
austenitic alloys and alloys composed by austenite and ferrite. As depicted in the diagram, the microstructural
boundary between -austenite and the two phases -ferrite and - austenite is claimed to follow a seconddegree expression [6].
Nieq = (Creq -16)2 + 12
(1.6)
12
This equation implies curvature, due to the quadratic term, and that the lines on the Schaeffler
diagram are curved. In later studies in 1948, Schaeffler modified his diagram and the curved line of the
austenite/austenite + ferrite boundary became a straight line as displayed in figure 5 [57].

Figure 4 Schaeffler diagram of 1947, with the Maurer-Strauss curve , Figure 5 Schaeffler diagram of 1948, with linear boundaries [56,57]

26

Rati Saluja, K. M. Moeed

International Journal of Engineering Technology, Management and Applied Sciences

www.ijetmas.com September 2015, Volume 3, Special Issue, ISSN 2349-4476


The 1948 diagram increased the capability to quantitatively predict weld metal microstructure, adding
additional isoferrite lines in the two-phase austenite and ferrite region, while retaining the original equivalency
formulas [57]. In 1949, Shaeffler published the final version of his constitution diagram, which is still in use
today and is presented in Figure 6. The expression for the chromium equivalent calculation was modified,
decreasing the relative weight of molybdenum, silicon, and niobium compared with the equivalent initially
proposed. However, the microstructural phases observed and the percentage volume ferrite were still
illustrated [58].
Creq = Cr + Mo + 1.5Si + 0.5Nb
(1.7)
This diagram was declared to give a universal precision of 4% volume ferrite, or 3 FN for 78% of
cases, and it has been widely used for ferrite prediction in welded stainless steels as well as for prediction of
microstructure in dissimilar welds once the characteristic percentage dilution due to the welding process is
recognized [39].

Figure 6 Schaeffler diagram of 1949, which is still in use [58]


4.1.3 DeLong Diagram
In 1956, instead of calculating the weld metal constitution for the entire composition range of stainless steels,
DeLong et al. introduced centered on 300 series austenitic stainless steels [13]. A part of their research was
the examination of nitrogen on the weld metal microstructure, for more accurate prediction of the ferrite
content in the stainless steel weld metal. Location of the lines in the diagram was significantly affected, due to
addition of nitrogen in the nickel equivalent. Slope of the isoferrite lines was increased due to the differences
that DeLong et al. found between the measured and calculated ferrite content on high-alloyed stainless steels
types (e.g. 316, 316L and 309), while keeping the spacing between isoferrite lines relatively constant [14].
He quantified the austenitizing effect of the nitrogen with a coefficient of 30 carbon in the expression
of nickel equivalent, while he considered valid the last Schaefflers expression for chromium equivalent [14].
Nieq = Ni +0.5 Mn + 30C
Creq = Cr + Mo + 1.5Si + 0.5Nb
(1.8)

Figure 7 DeLong diagram of 1956 for austenitic stainless steels [14]

27

Rati Saluja, K. M. Moeed

International Journal of Engineering Technology, Management and Applied Sciences

www.ijetmas.com September 2015, Volume 3, Special Issue, ISSN 2349-4476


4.1.4 DeLong-WRC Diagram
The DeLong-WRC Diagram, was reported by Long and DeLong is fairly insensitive to the normal
range of heat input variations associated with arc welding[45]. The Subcommittee on Welding Stainless Steel
of the Welding Research Council initiated an effort in the mid-1980s to revise and expand the Schaeffler and
DeLong diagrams, in order to improve the accuracy of ferrite prediction in stainless steel weld metal. For
ferrite contents higher than 8 FN, DeLong harmonized the diagram with new experimental outcomes from
GTAW and GMAW welds in order to replace the ancient extrapolations he had established before. He
significantly altered slopes of the iso-ferrite lines to improve the ferrite prediction of higher alloyed stainless.
For 95% of cases, precision was claimed to be 3 FN for GMAW and GTAW and 4 FN for SMAW [18].
The Welding Research Council (WRC) Subcommittee on Welding Stainless Steel adopted FN as its value for
measuring ferrite in 1973 [27,70], and its method for calibration is specified by the AWS A4.2 and ISO 8249
standards. The introduction of Ferrite Number (FN) scale resulted due to the difficulty of measuring the ferrite
content quantitatively by volume in stainless steel welds [45]. The FN values are based on magnetic
measurements, since the BCC delta ferrite is ferromagnetic, while the FCC austenite is not. The FN values are
not intended to relate directly to percent ferrite, although at values below 10 they are considered to be similar
[3].

Figure 8 DeLong diagram of 1973, introducing the concept of Ferrite Number [13,14]
4.1.5 WRC-1988 and WRC-1992 Diagrams
In order to improve the accuracy of ferrite prediction in stainless steel weld metal, the subcommittee on
Welding Stainless Steel of the Welding Research Council initiated an attempt to revise and expand the
Schaeffler and DeLong diagrams. In 1988, in a study funded by WRC, Siewert et al. [49] proposed a new
predictive diagram, which covered an expanded range of compositions, from 0 to 100 FN, compared to the 0
to 18 FN range of the DeLong diagram. It was a result of an extremely large database of welds (approximately
950) gathered from electrode manufacturers, research institutes and the literature. WRC-1988 diagram also
included boundaries that defined the solidification modes [25].
New equivalency formulas were developed which removed the manganese coefficient from the nickel
equivalent, thereby eliminating the systematic overestimation of FN in highly alloyed weld metals. The WRC1988 equivalency formulas are given as:
Creq=Cr+Mo+0.7Nb
Nieq=Ni+35C+20N
(1.9)
Soon after, Lake proposed the addition of a copper coefficient with value from 0.25 to 0.30, in the Nickelequivalent formula [41]. Various researchers tracked Lakes study and planned their estimations for the
copper coefficient, in order to add them in the Schaeffler and DeLong nickel-equivalents. In 1992, Kotecki,
using Lakes data as a basis, proposed a coefficient of 0.25 for copper in the nickel-equivalent formula [2938]. Kotecki and Siewert also proposed a new diagram, which included the coefficient 0.25 for copper in the
nickel-equivalent formula [34]. The WRC-1992 diagram diagram has been widely accepted worldwide and
has replaced the DeLong diagram in the ASME code.
Nieq=Ni+35C+20N+0.25Cu
(1.10)

28

Rati Saluja, K. M. Moeed

International Journal of Engineering Technology, Management and Applied Sciences

www.ijetmas.com September 2015, Volume 3, Special Issue, ISSN 2349-4476


The WRC-1992 diagram is presented in Figure 10. Whereas the extended axes of the diagram allow a
wide range of base and filler metal to be plotted, the FN prediction is valid only when the weld metal
composition falls within the iso-FN lines of the diagram [7]. At the present time, the WRC-1992 diagram is
the most reliable and most accurate for the prediction of Ferrite Number in the austenitic and duplex stainless
steel welds. The only shortcoming of the WRC-1992 may be the absence of a factor for titanium, which is a
potent carbide former, also a ferrite-promoting element in the absence of carbon. Titanium also influences the
phase balance by removing carbon from the matrix [39].

Figure 9 WRC-1988 diagram with solidification mode boundaries,

Figure 10 The WRC-1992 diagram [39]

Also worthy of mention is the research carried out in 2007 by Anderson et al. regarding the influence of
molybdenum on ferrite content of stainless steel welds [2].
FN = 48.53 13.85 C + 12.73 Si + 1.16 Mn + 3.89Cr 3.14 Ni + 4.60 Mo + 10.10 Cu 20.36 N

(1.11)

4.2 Development of mathematical model


The regression procedure was used for the development of mathematical model to predict ferrite
number. The Second order polynomial representing the response surface for k factors is given by Eq.1.12
Y =bo +
+
Xj +i
(1.12)
Where
b0 = free term of the regression equation,
b1,b2, b3, b4, andb5 = linear terms,
b11, b22 , b33 , b44 , and b55 = quadratic terms,
b12, b13, b14, b15, b23, b24, b25, b34, b35 and b45 = interaction terms and
term = error term.
The response function representing ferrite umber can be expressed as shown in equation 1.13
F=(iu, V iu, Liu, Iiu, Qiu) + eu
(1.13)
Where, = response surface, eu = residual, u = number of observations in the factorial experiment
and iu represents level of the ith factor in the uth observation. Box and Hunter proposed central composite
rotatable design for fitting a second-order response surface based on the criterion of rotatability. Standard
error yu can be calculated at any point on the surface from the result of the experiment. The standard error
will be the function of the coordinates xi at any point. In a rotatable design, the standard error of
the response F is same for all points that are at the same distance from the center of the region [47,65].
The adequacy of the model is tested using the analysis of variance (ANOVA). As per the ANOVA technique,
the model can be considered to be adequate if the calculated value of F-ratio of the model should not exceed
the standard tabulated value of F-ratio for a desired level of confidence (95%) [52].
4.3 Neural Network
In the 21st Century, a noteworthy improvement in the quantification of ferrite number has been the
development of artificial neural Networks [72]. The aim of the analysis is to model the ferrite number in
stainless steel welds as a function of composition and few physical properties. The neural network is a simple
combination of transfer functions and weights. The influence of the inputs on the output variable is together
with the transfer functions implicit in the values of the weights. The artificial neural network is a multivariable
nonlinear regression method that can identify complex relationships between variables that are difficult to

29

Rati Saluja, K. M. Moeed

International Journal of Engineering Technology, Management and Applied Sciences

www.ijetmas.com September 2015, Volume 3, Special Issue, ISSN 2349-4476


recognize by linear regression. The method is based on the interaction between three layers, as illustrated in
diagram [75]. The first layer is composed of input nodes depicting the concentration of each alloying element.
Secondly, there is a hidden layer with an adjustable number of nodes that have to be optimized in order to get
the best project in the result but without overloading the system of variables. The third layer is the output layer
containing one single node whose value is the predicted FN value [73].

Figure 11 FNN-1999 artificial neural network sketch [72].


For Viteks network, first layer was formed by 13 elements further achieved with six hidden nodes for
second layer. He proposed that delta ferrite at room temperature depends on different variables that are
interconnected as chemical composition, the solidification mode, and the cooling rate, which further affect the
solid-state transformation [74]. He developed two neural networks between 2000 and 2003, the FNN-1999,
which only considered the chemical compositions as input data, and the ORFN, which added the weld cooling
rate to the earlier mentioned parameters with application range in between 103.106 C/s, 14.732% Cr, 4.6
33.5% Ni, 0.0080.2% C, 0.016.85% Mo, 0.3512.7% Mn, 0.0031.3% Si for ferrite number 0131 FN[7].
That work led to the conclusion that ferrite number depends on two variables: the total alloying level
(Creq+Nieq) and the ratio Creq/Nieq. By using Hammar and Svenssons equivalents as depicted in equation 1.14,
a general expression was proposed as equation 1.15 [48, 22].
Creq=Cr+1.37Mo
Nieq=Ni+0.31Mn +22C+14.2N
(1.14)
In order to validate the new general expression the WRC database (Ref. 31), which contains 279
samples whose chemical compositions are within the range of the austenitic, was used. The predicted FN
values were then compared with the experimental FN provided by the database [7].
FN =54.22 126.26 (Creq + Nieq ) + [- 48.11 + 37.14(Creq + Nieq )]

+ [-0.23 +61.95(Creq + Nieq )]

(1.15)

4.2.1The Bayesian neural network


Neural network in a Bayesian framework allows the calculation of error bars representing the
uncertainty in the fitting parameters. The method aimed that there are many functions that can be fitted into
uncertain regions of the input space, without unduly compromising the fit in adjacent regions, which are rich
in accurate data. Instead of calculating a unique set of weights, a probability distribution of a set of weights is
used to define the fitting uncertainty. The error bars, therefore, become large when data are sparse or locally
noisy [7].
The Bayesian framework employed consists of thirteen input nodes, xi, representing the thirteen composition
variables (e.g. C, Cr, Ni, Mo, N, Mn, Si, Fe, Cu, Ti, Nb, V and Co), a number of hidden nodes, h I, and one
output y ((ferrite Number). The single output represents the ferrite number. Both the input and output
variables were normalized within the range 0.5 as follows [71]
(1.16)
Where
= normalized value of ,
= maximum value of and

30

Rati Saluja, K. M. Moeed

International Journal of Engineering Technology, Management and Applied Sciences

www.ijetmas.com September 2015, Volume 3, Special Issue, ISSN 2349-4476


= minimal value of .
The outputs are calculated from the inputs as follows: linear functions of the inputs, x j multiplied by
the weights wij are operated on by a hyperbolic tangent transfer function so that each input contributes to
every hidden unit where N is the number of input variables.
(1.17)
The bias is designated and is analogous to the constant that appears in linear regression. The transfer from
the hidden units to the output is linear, and is given by the output y is therefore a non-linear function of xj, the
function usually selected being the hyperbolic tangent because of its flexibility.
y=
(1.18)
i
The network is completely described if the number of input nodes, output nodes and the
hidden units are known along with all the weights wij and biases i. These weights are determined by training
the network which involves the minimization of an objective function [71].
4.4 Measurement Methods
This section presents well-founded and currently used measurement techniques and predictive
methods for determining the -ferrite content in austenitic stainless steel weld metal.
4.1.1 Magnetic Determination
The magnetic determination method is proposed as the arbitrary, standard method of calibrating nondestructive ferrite content measuring devices [54]. The WRC recommends magnetic determination techniques
based on attractive force and magnetic permeability. The method is based on the magnetic response of the
delta ferrite phase as against the nonmagnetic -austenite phase [3].
The main magnetic techniques currently in use are based on the attractive force (such as Magne-Gage
magnetic balance) and on the magnetic permeability (Fischer Feritscope equipment), while some earlier
techniques were based on magnetic saturation and the Mossbauer Effect [48]. The attractive force technique is
based on the force required to separate the ferromagnetic sample from a standardized permanent magnet in the
equipment [19]. The measurement of this force was correlated to the FN scale using calibration standards. The
classic example of this equipment (Magne Gage) is generally considered the reference tool of its type [3,7].
4.4.2 Metallographic Determination
Metallographic determination consists of doing a visual quantitative counting manually or
automatically of the number of subdivisions where the presence of ferrite is detected in a previously polished
and metallographically etched sample [3]. This method is based on the internationally accepted assumption
that the ferrite volumetric proportion is analogous to the proportion at the surface measured [4]. It is essential
that the selected area is microstructurally representative of the whole sample as ferrite distribution is not
homogeneous in the weld deposits. Other inconveniences are the difficulty in determining with accuracy the
counting when the ferrite morphology is too thin, such as in cases of eutectic or skeletal ferrite morphologies
[1]. A suitable field of application for quantitative metallography is the determination of the
ferrite in the
heat affected zone (HAZ) of duplex welds, as this is so narrow that magnetic measurements do not give
accurate results due to the influence of contiguous materials [7].
4.4.3 X-ray Diffraction.
The technique is based on exposure of the stainless steel sample to a monochromatic X-radiation and
depending on the crystallographic structure of the phases present (BCC ferrite, FCC austenite) [61]. There will
be reflection peaks or ach phase whose intensity will be related to the concentration of each phase in the
sample the quantitative determination of ferrite in stainless steel welds has not been satisfactory, possibly
because the fine skeletal morphology of the ferrite and the compositional segregations between the dendrite
core and the matrix make the diffraction patterns diffuse. The equipment is expensive and only used in
laboratory studies [11, 21].
4.4.4 Electrochemical Determination.
This technique was proposed by Gill et al. in 1979. It is based on dissolving the -austenite phase and
keeping the ferrite phase passivated by exposing it to an electrolyte and a predetermined voltage; therefore,

31

Rati Saluja, K. M. Moeed

International Journal of Engineering Technology, Management and Applied Sciences

www.ijetmas.com September 2015, Volume 3, Special Issue, ISSN 2349-4476


the selective dissolution of austenite isolates the ferrite [20]. The undissolved ferrite was separated and
estimated gravimetrically. The estimation of the ferrite by this technique, when compared with optical and
magnetic methods, showed slightly lower values [7]. The limitations and inconveniences are related to the fact
that this is a destructive technique, and that it is necessary first to establish the austenite polarization diagram
for each alloy where the technique is applied, because the correct voltage is required to ensure the total
dissolution of the austenite [5]. It is also an extremely slow method, as it is said to take 40 hours to dissolve
the austenite in a 1mm thick sample with 3%-volume ferrite [68].
4.4.5 Ferritscope
In 1990, Elmer and Eagar had measured the -ferrite content in very small weld samples of mass 5
mg and less than 0.5 mm thickness from EBW and LBW stainless steels (cooled at around 104105 C/s). The
small dimensions of the samples would not allow a magnetic measurement or quantitative metallography;
therefore, the authors used a magnetometer with sample vibration and a technique based on saturation
magnetization of the ferrite [15, 16]. Ferritscope or Ferrite content meters are very durable and portable. It
offers full non-destructive measurement of many kinds of metal. Ferrite testing equipments can detect ferrite
in piping materials, welded cladding, and austenitic and duplex stainless steels. It is easy to measure the ferrite
content accurately when using the Ferritscope upon probe placement on the surface of the specimen; the
reading is displayed automatically and stored in the instrument [22]. When scanning the weld seam with the
probe positioned, the continuous readings are captured and stored. This provides a ferrite content profile along
the weld seam.

Figure 12 Ferritoscope [22]


A magnetic field generated by a coil begins to interact with the magnetic portions of the specimen.
The changes in the magnetic field induce a voltage proportional to the ferrite content in a second coil. This
voltage is then evaluated [7]. All magnetizable structure sections are measured i.e., in addition to delta ferrite
also strain-induced martensite, for example, or other ferritic phases. A specific advantage of the magnetic
induction method for measuring the ferrite content is that a sigma phase. A Fe-Cr precipitation, which has
formed due to excess ferrite content and unfavorable cooling conditions, is also recognized correctly as a nonferritic structural component. In comparison, erroneous interpretation of ferrite content is likely in a
metallographic section where a sigma phase is not easily distinguished from a ferritic structure [15,16] .
4. Conclusions
Determination of ferrite content in stainless steel weld deposits is a topic that has generated much
interest and challenged researchers from the early days of welding until today, which is the reason for the
development of such a variety of predictive and measurement methods since 1920[46].
It is also recognized that for the same combination of base material and consumable, differences in the
experimental values can also be found related to the specific welding procedure and parameters used [54].
Therefore, whatever FN value is allocated to a weld metal should be derived from an average obtained from
several measurements taken [59].
There are a few tools used for predicting delta ferrite content, like Strauss-Maurer, SchaefflerDeLong Diagram WRC Diagram as well as others methods like neural network, magnetic and
metallographic determination, electrochemical and X ray diffraction technique, Ferriteometer etc. The final
welding method has a significant influence on the delta ferrite content of weld material [53]. For example, the

32

Rati Saluja, K. M. Moeed

International Journal of Engineering Technology, Management and Applied Sciences

www.ijetmas.com September 2015, Volume 3, Special Issue, ISSN 2349-4476


chromium content can change in SAW depending on the specific flux used, or in SMAW, GTAW, or GMAW
the atmospheric nitrogen could be absorbed into the weld pool if the arc length is too long[61].
1)
The effectiveness of the presence of a small but controlled amount of delta ferrite in preventing
cracking of austenitic stainless steel weld deposits is well known [39].
2)
The amount and distribution of delta ferrite was strongly affected by the steel chemical composition,
but less affected by the cooling rate [15].
3)
Despite their practical limitations, wherever it is possible, experimental measurements based on
magnetic determination are better than predictive methods, whose accuracy is mainly dependant on the
reliability of chemical composition. However, in those cases where the weld deposit is not available such as in
the early stage of projects where alternative welding consumables are being considered, then predictive
methods have their scope [54].
4)
Whichever method is used the proportion of delta ferrite can vary within a few percents. It is very
important to known that the test made to measure ferrite delta of steel before welding is no so conclusive
because some ferrite is transformed to austenitic during hot working[59].
5)
Each diagram has been obtained according to specific assumptions in terms of linear regressions, and
that variations in the chemical composition could also be attributed to the specific welding process and its
settings [7].
6)
According to Viteks study, the FNN-1999 neural network is claimed to create a more accurate
prediction than the WRC-1992 diagram and the ORFN neural network. However, in the case of laser or highenergy processes, which are related to high cooling rates, it is claimed the ORFN neural network makes the
most accurate predictions [74].
7)
The neural network model is the most accurate composition only dependent FN prediction method
currently reported in literature with predicted RMS error less than 2. This model is 65% more accurate than
the WRC 1992 diagram and 40% more accurate than the other neural network model reported in the
literature [75].
Table 1 Comparison of root mean square (RMS) errors for different Ferrite Number prediction methods (265
datasets)[74]
FN Prediction method

RMS error for complete


training database

RMS error for independents


dataset not used in training

Bayesian Neural Network (BNN) model

2.1

2.03

FNN-1999 (Back Propagation Neural 3.5


2.3
Network) model
WRC-1992 Diagram
5.8
2.6
Function Fit model
5.6
5.1
8)
All the literature indicates that a content of delta ferrite of max 8% in austenitic stainless steels weld is
accepted without problems moreover decreases the cracking susceptibility of weld material and improve the
cracking resistance. In proportion greater than 10 %, delta ferrite is more can be harmful to the welded area
due to the transformation of ferrite to sigma phase which is a specific transformation of the steel alloyed with
chromium.
References
[1]
[2]
[3]

[4]
[5]

AISI American Iron and Steel Institute, www.steel.org


Anderson, T., Perricone, M. J., DuPont, J. N., and Marder, A. R., The influence of molybdenum on stainless
steel weld microstructures. Welding Journal 86(9): 281-s to 292-s.
ANSI/AWS A4.2-91, Standard procedures for calibrating magnetic instruments to measure the delta ferrite
content of austenitic and duplex austenitic-ferritic stainless steel weld metal. 1991. Miami, Fla.: American
Welding Society.
ASTM A800/A800M-91, Standard practice for steel casting, austenitic alloy, estimating ferrite content, West
Conshohocken, ASTM.
Astrm, H. Prediction of FN from chemical analysis, ELGA technical memo. 1998.

33

Rati Saluja, K. M. Moeed

International Journal of Engineering Technology, Management and Applied Sciences

www.ijetmas.com September 2015, Volume 3, Special Issue, ISSN 2349-4476


[6]
[7]
[8]
[9]
[10]
[11]
[12]
[13]
[14]
[15]

[16]
[17]
[18]
[19]
[20]
[21]

[22]
[23]
[24]
[25]
[26]
[27]
[28]

[29]
[30]
[31]
[32]
[33]
[34]

Balmforth M. C., Lippold, J. C., A new ferritic-martensitic stainless steel constitution diagram. Welding Journal
79(12), 2000, pp. 339-s to 345-s.
Bermejo M. A. V., Predictive and Measurement Methods for Delta Ferrite Determination in Stainless Steels,
Welding Journal, Vol. 91, 2012, pp.113-121.
Bjrkroth, J., and Henrikson, S., Ferrite-a structure element with favourable and harmful effects in austenitic
stainless welds. Conference organized by the Swedish Welding Society, 1965.
David, S. A., Ferrite morphology and variations in ferrite content in austenitic stainless steel welds. Welding
Journal 60(4), 198163- s to 71-s.
David S. A., Vitek J. M., and Hebble T. L. Effect of rapid solidification on stainless steel weld metal
microstructures and its implications on the Schaeffler diagram. Welding Journal 66(10), 1987, 289-s to 300-s.
DeLong W. T., Calibration procedure for instruments to measure the delta ferrite content of austenitic stainless
steel weld metal, Welding Journal, 1973, 52(2), pp. 69s
DeLong W. T, Ostrom G. A., Szumachowski E. R., Measurement and calculation of ferrite in stainless-steel
weld metal, Welding Journal, 1956, 35(11), pp. 521s-528s
DeLong, W. T., Ferrite in austenitic stainless steel weld metal. Welding Journal 53(7), 1974, pp273-s to 286-s.
DeLong, W. T., A modified phase diagram for stainless steel weld metals. Metal Progress. 77(2) , 1960 pp. 99
100B.
Elmer J. W., Allen S. M., and Eagar T. W. The influence of cooling rate on the ferrite content of stainless steel
alloys,Proceedings of the 2nd International Conference on Trends in Welding Research, May 1418, 1989.
Gatlinburg, Tenn.: ASM International, 1989, pp. 165170.
Elmer, J. W., and Eagar, T. W. Measuring the residual ferrite content of rapidly solidified stainless steel alloys.
WeldingJournal 64(4), 1990, pp.141-s to 150-s.
Folkhard E., Welding metallurgy of stainless steels (NewYork: Springer Verlag) Springer-Verlag, 1988,WienNew York.
Feldstein J., The WRC Diagram, Svetsaren,1993, 47(2),pp. 3639.
Gauge calibration and material characterization. Welding Journal 80(4), pp. 106-s to 114-s.
Gill T. P. S., Dayal R. K., and Gnanamoorthy J. B. Estimation of delta ferrite in austenitic stainless steel
weldments by an electrochemical technique. Welding Journal (12), 1979, pp. 375-s to 378-s.
Hammar ., Svensson U., Influence of steel composition on segregation and microstructure during solidification
of austenitic stainless steels, International Conference on Solidification and Casting of Metals. Sheffield, UK.
The Metals Society, 1979., pp. 401410.
http://www.imkosan.com.tr/
http://welding-karthik.blogspot.in/
Hull, F. C., Delta ferrite and martensite formation in stainless steels. Welding Journal 51(5), 1973, pp. 193-s to
203-s.
ISO 8249, Welding, Determination of Ferrite Number (FN) in austenitic and duplex ferriticaustenitic Cr-Ni
stainless steel weld metals, 2000, Brussels, Belgium: ISO.
Johnson E., Grabaek L., Johansen A., Sarholt Kristensen L., and Wood J. V., Microstructure of rapidly
solidified stainless steel. Materials Science and Engineering 98(2), 1988, pp. 301303.
Kannan, T., and Murugan, N. 2006. Prediction of Ferrite Number of duplex stainless steel clad metals using
RSM. Welding Journal 85(5): 91-s to 100-s.
Katayama, S., and Matsunawa, A. 1984. Solidification microstructure of laser welded stainless steels.
Proceedings International Congress on Applications of Lasers & Electro-Optics (ICALEO). Laser Institute of
America 44, pp. 6067.
Kotecki D. J., Ferrite measurement and control in duplex stainless steel welds, in Weldability of Materials:
Proceedings of the Materials Symposium, ASM International, October 1990, Materials Park, OH.
Kotecki D. J., Verification of the NBS-CSM Ferrite Diagram, IIW Document II-C-834-88, American Council of
the International Institute of Welding, 1988, Miami, FL
Kotecki D. J., A martensite boundary on the WRC-1992 diagram. Welding Journal 78(5),1999, 181-s to 192-s.
Kotecki D. J., Ferrite control in duplex stainless steel weld metal, Welding Journal 65(10), 1986, pp. 273-s to
278-s.
Kotecki D. J., Martensite prediction in stainless steel weld cladding, Paper presented at the Stainless Steel
World Conference (2), 1999, pp. 573583.
Kotecki D. J., Siewert T. A, WRC-1992 Constitution Diagram for stainless steel weld metals: A modification of
the WRC- 1988 Diagram. Welding Journal 71(5),1992 , pp. 171-s to 178-s.

34

Rati Saluja, K. M. Moeed

International Journal of Engineering Technology, Management and Applied Sciences

www.ijetmas.com September 2015, Volume 3, Special Issue, ISSN 2349-4476


[35]
[36]
[37]
[38]
[39]

[40]
[41]
[42]
[43]
[44]
[45]
[46]

[47]
[48]
[49]
[50]
[51]

[52]
[53]
[54]
[55]

[56]
[57]
[58]
[59]
[60]
[61]
[62]

Kotecki, D. J. , Extension of the WRC Ferrite Number system, Welding Journal 61(11), 1982, pp. 352-s to 361s.
Kotecki, D. J., Silicon effect on stainless steel weld metal ferrite, IIW International Institute of Welding. Doc.
reference II-C-1986, pp. 779-86.
Kotecki, D. J., Szumachowski, E. R., Manganese effect on stainless steel weld metal ferrite. IIW Document IIC-706-83. IIW International Institute of Welding. 1983.
Kotecki, D. J., Molybdenum effect on stainless steel weld metal ferrite. IIW International Institute of Welding.
Document reference II-C-707-83, 1983.
Kyriakongonas A. P., 3D Numerical Modeling of Austenitic Stainless Steel 316L Multipass Butt Welding and
comparison with Experimental Results, National technical university of Athens school of Naval Architecture
and Marine Engineering.
Kujanpaa, V., Suutala, N., Takalo, T., and Moisio, T. 1979. Welding Research Inter.9(2):55-76.
Lake F. B., Effect of Cu on stainless steel weld metal ferrite content, paper presented at AWS Annual
Convention , 1990
Lippold J. C., Savage W. F., Solidification of austenitic stainless steel weldments, 1: a proposed mechanism,
Welding Journal, 1979, 58(12), pp. 362-374
Lippold J. C. and Kotecki Damian J.,Welding metallurgy and weldability of Stainless Steels, John Wiley &
Sons Inc., 2005
Lippold, J. C., Solidification behavior and cracking susceptibility of pulsedlaser welds in austenitic stainless
steels. Welding Journal 73(6), 1994, pp.129-s to 139-s.
Long, C. J., and DeLong, W. T., The ferrite content of austenitic stainless steel weld metal. Welding Journal
52(7), 1973, pp.281-s to 297-s.
Lundin C. D., Ruprecht, W., and Zhou, G. ,Ferrite measurement in austenitic and duplex stainless steel castings.
Literature review submitted to SFSA/CMC/DOE. Materials Joining Research Group. University of Tennessee,
1999, Knoxville: 40 pages.
Mathematical Modelling of Weld Phenomena 6, Ed. H. Cerjak. Maney Publishing, 2002.
McCowan, C. N., Siewert, T. A., and Olson, D. L., Stainless steel weld metal: Prediction of ferrite content.
WRC Bulletin, 1989, pp. 342-378.
McCowan, C. N., Siewert, T. A., Vigliotti, D. P., and Wang, C. M., Reference materials for weld metal ferrite
content, 2001.
Newell H. D., Fleischmann M., Hot rolled metal article and method of making same, 1938 U.S. patent
2,118,683.
Padilha A. F.; Tavares C.F., Martorano M.A., Delta Ferrite Formation in Austenitic Stainless Steel Castings,
Materials Science Forum Vols.,Department of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering, University of So
Paulo, Brazi,l2013, pp 733-738.
Peckner D., Bernstein I. M., Handbook of Stainless Steels, 1977, McGraw-Hill, New York
Potak, Y. M., and Sagalevich, E. A. 1972. Structural diagram for stainless steels as applied to cast metal and
metal deposited during welding. Avt. Svarka (5), pp.1013.
Reid, H. F., and DeLong, W. T., Making sense out of ferrite requirements in welding stainless steels. Metal
Progress. (6), 1973, pp. 7377.
Saluja R., Moeed K. M., The Emphasis Of Phase Transformations And Alloying Constituents On Hot
Cracking Susceptibility Of Type 304l And 316l Stainless Steel Welds, , International Journal of Engineering
Science and Technology 4 (5), pp.2206-2216
Schaeffler A. L., Welding dissimilar metals with stainless electrodes, Iron Age, 1948 July pp. 162-172
Schaeffler A. L., Selection of austenitic electrodes for welding dissimilar metals, Welding Journal, 1947, 26(10),
pp. 601s-620s.
Schaeffler A. L., Constitution diagram for stainless steel weld metal, etal Progress, 1949, 56(11) pp. 680-680B
Siewert T. A., Mc Cowan C. N., Olson D. L., Ferrite Number prediction to 100 FN in stainless steel weld metal,
Welding Journal, 1988, 67(12), pp.289s-298s
Scherer R., Riedrick G., Hoch G., Einfluss eines Gahalts an Ferrit in austenitischer Chrom-Nickel-Stahlen auf
den Kornzerfall, Archiv fr das Eisenhttenwesen, 1939 (13) July, pp. 13-52
Scrata, The measurement of delta ferrite in cast austenitic stainless steels. Technical bulletin of the Steel
Castings Research and Trade Association, 1981, pp.23-27.
Sedriks A. J., Corrosion of Stainless Steels, 1996, John Wiley & Sons Inc.

35

Rati Saluja, K. M. Moeed

International Journal of Engineering Technology, Management and Applied Sciences

www.ijetmas.com September 2015, Volume 3, Special Issue, ISSN 2349-4476


[63]
[64]
[65]

[66]
[67]
[68]
[69]
[70]
[71]
[72]
[73]
[74]
[75]

[76]

Shankar V. et.al., Solidification cracking in austenitic stainless steel welds, Sadhana ,Vol. 28, Parts 3 & 4,
India, 2003, pp. 359 -382.
Sharifitabar M, Halvaee A, Khorshahian S., Microstructure and mechanical properties of resistance upset butt
welded 304 austenitic stainless steel joints [J]. Materials and Design, 2011, 32: 38543864.
Siewert T. A, Siewert E. A., Farrar J. C. M., and Zhang Z., Statistical evaluation of a round-robin experiment:
Uncertainties in ferrite measurement in weldments. IIW Document IX-H-531-02. International Institute of
Welding Commission IX, 2002.
Sindo Kou, Welding Metallurgy, 2nd Edition, 2003, John Wiley & Sons Inc.
Strauss B., Maurer E., Die hochlegierten Chromnickelstahle als nichtrostende Stahle, Kruppsche Monatshefte,
1920, 1(8), pp. 129-146
Valiente Bermejo, Modelization of -ferrite content (FN) in austenitic stainless steels under electric arc
conditions. PhD dissertation. University of Barcelona., 2010.
Valiente Bermejo, Modelization of -ferrite content in austenitic stainless steel welds metals. IIW Document IX2358-11. 64th Annual Assembly of the International Institute of Welding, 2011, pp.17-20. Chennai, India.
Vasudevan M., Prediction of Ferrite Number in Stainless Steel Welds, Materials Technology Division
Metallurgy and Materials Group, IGCAR.
Vasudevan, M., Murugananth, M., and Bhaduri, A. K., Application of Bayesian neural network for modeling
and prediction of Ferrite Number in austenitic stainless steel welds.
Vitek, J. M., David, S. A., and Hinman, C. R. Improved Ferrite Number prediction model that accounts for
cooling rate effects -Part 1: Model development. Welding Journal 82(1), 2003, pp.10-s to 17-s.
Vitek, J. M., David, S. A., and Hinman, C. R. Improved Ferrite Number prediction model that accounts for
cooling rate effects Part 2: Model results. Welding Journal 82(2), 2003.43-s to 50-s.
Vitek, J. M., Iskander, Y. S., and Oblow, E. M. Improved Ferrite Number prediction in stainless steel arc welds
using artificial neural networks - Part 2: Neural network results. Welding Journal 79(2), 2000. 41-s to 50-s.
Vitek, J. M., Iskander, Y. S., and Oblow, E. M. Improved Ferrite Number prediction in stainless steel arc welds
using artificial neural networks -Part 1, Neural network development, Welding Journal 79(2) pp. 2000.33-s to
40-s.
W. S. Lee, C.-F. Lin : Materials Science and Engineering A308 (2001) 124135.

36

Rati Saluja, K. M. Moeed